These are all the Blogs posted on Sunday, 20, 2008.
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Kidnappers claim British hostage in Iraq has killed himself
From The Sunday Times
The kidnappers of five British hostages seized in Baghdad last year have claimed in a videotaped statement that one of the men has killed himself. According to the statement, the hostage — named only as Jason — died on May 25, four days before the first anniversary of the abduction.
The claim is made in a video passed to The Sunday Times in Baghdad last week. Another hostage is shown appealing for the British government to hasten the men’s release. British officials said there was “no immediate corroboration” of the kidnappers’ claim that Jason was dead.
An intermediary who handed the video to a representative of this newspaper said the hostage had made two previous attempts at suicide. He said proof of death would be provided only if the British government agreed to negotiate.
The hostages, an IT consultant named Peter Moore and four bodyguards, were kidnapped almost 14 months ago from the Iraqi finance ministry by a Shi’ite group. They are seeking the release of nine prisoners in American detention.
Two of the guards are called Jason and the others are named Alan and Alec. Their full names have been withheld at their families’ request.
The video, entitled Intihar — Arabic for suicide — opens with a photograph of a man wearing a football shirt. He is identified as Jason in the statement, which appears on screen in Arabic and is signed, “The Shi’ite Islamic Resistance in Iraq”.
The statement accuses the British government of responding indifferently to messages from the kidnappers and their captives. It claims that despite repeated warnings about the men’s psychological condition, little has been done to end their ordeal.
“This procrastination and foot-dragging and lack of seriousness on the part of the British government has prolonged their psychological deterioration, pushing one of them, Jason, to commit suicide on 25/5/2008,” the statement says. “He surprised our brethren, who were taking care of him, with his suicide.” The captors say they regret Jason’s death but hold the British government responsible for the hostages’ fate.
Gordon Brown raised their plight in talks with Nouri al-Maliki, the Iraqi prime minister, during a visit to Baghdad yesterday. “We both share a desire to see them returned safely to their families,” he said last night. “Clearly this is a very distressing development. We are taking this very seriously. There are many people working behind the scenes trying to find a solution.”
I know that deals and capitulation will only encourage more hostage taking. I pray that the families are being kept informed and that the apparent lack of interest and action (other than by Canon Andrew White and Dr Carey) is merely to protect operations. I really want to believe Gordon Brown.
Posted on 07/20/2008 1:26 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Sunday, 20 July 2008
BBC investigates 'anti-Muslim bias' - on its own Asian network
From The Mail on Sunday
The BBC has launched an investigation after complaints from staff of anti-Muslim discrimination by a ‘mafia of executives’ at the Corporation’s own Asian radio station.
At least 20 past and present BBC employees, all Asian Muslims, have lodged complaints that its digital radio station, Asian Network, is operating with an anti-Muslim policy.
They claim Muslim presenters and reporters are sidelined or sacked from the station, which began 12 years ago, in favour of Asians from other backgrounds – mainly Hindus and Sikhs.
They also complain that attempts to persuade the station’s upper ranks to play Pakistani or Bengali music for its 500,000 listeners are ignored in favour of a strict diet of Bollywood and bhangra tunes, which are more popular among the Hindu and Sikh communities.
Their case has been taken up by Labour peer Lord Ahmed of Rotherham, (a professional stirrer of colossal proportions, as I know) who campaigns on discrimination issues. (hem!) He wrote to BBC director-general Mark Thompson last month.
Now the BBC has taken the unusual step of having the inquiry conducted by an external expert, Stephen Whittle, chairman of the Ofcom-linked Broadcast Training & Skills Regulator.
Lord Ahmed said ‘. . . There seems to be a small mafia that is promoting their version of a culture which is contrary to the diversity within the Asian community.’
One former employee said: ‘There used to be a much higher representation of Muslims on staff. Now there are seven daytime presenters and only one is Muslim. There are about eight reporters and half were Muslims – now only two are.’
The inquiry is also expected to focus on complaints that listeners who want to hear Muslim-influenced music are short-changed because of a bias towards music from Hindu and Sikh cultures such as bhangra, Bollywood films or black artists.
Another former employee said: ‘This is a deliberate policy but people are too scared to speak out because they are worried they will be victimised if they do.’
The “hideously white” sneer won’t work with this one. I thought Muslims were not supposed to listen to music, if they were truly devout. And that the sin and depravity of music and dance were to be discouraged. Shame on Lord FishandChip for encouraging good Muslims into sin!
Posted on 07/20/2008 2:24 AM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Today in the Religion of Peace (tm)
On this day, July 20, in 1924, the U.S. Vice Consul to Persia (present-day Iran) was murdered by a Muslim mob. The mob was enraged by rumors that the Vice Consul, Robert Imbrie, had killed several people by poisoning a water fountain. They may also have been motivated by Imbrie's efforts in the preceding weeks to protect Dr. Susan Moody, an American living in Tehran who had converted to Bahaism. Just as Shi'a are considered heretics by Sunnis, Bahais are considered heretics by Shi'a. It was the diplomatic pressure that Imbrie had applied to the local police that had spared the life of Dr. Moody at the hands of a mob of enraged Muslims surrounding her home.
In the aftermath of Imbrie's murder, his widow was spat upon and was the target of stonethrowing. The U.S. goverment responded by requesting that the Persians pay the cost of transporting the body of the Vice Consul back to the U.S.
In 2006, Mohammad Gholi Majd published his book "Oil and the killing of the American Consul in Tehran", in which he explicates his theory that Imbrie was the victim of...wait for it...a British conspiracy.
Posted on 07/20/2008 6:32 AM by Artemis Gordon Glidden
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Cleaning Bush House
The BBC should release the report about its anti-Israel and pro-Muslim bias that it has sat on for some time. This report, because it is not about the Asian service but about the BBC's world-wide service, including the execrable World Service with which Americans are horrifiedly familiar -- the horror comes whenever the Middle East is being discussed or merely mentioned -- is much more important a matter than the complaints by disgruntled employees about job prospects or of whether the music played is "too" Hindu and "too" Sikh.
In the Asian service, no doubt, the non-Muslims -- Hindus and Sikhs -- have a good idea of what Muslims are up to, and why their coverage would be so obviously biased that it would offend the very audience the BBC Asian Service most wishes to reach. If the BBC wants to have a separate Muslim service, for Muslim and by Muslims, very well then, but to have them infiltrate, and dominate the coverage of news of the subcontinent, as they have been allowed, along with non-Muslims most willing -- see Orla Guerin (married to a "Palestinian" Arab and showing it in every word), see Barbara Plett (weeping for Arafat), see the hard-voiced Lyse Doucet (with her vicious coverage of Israel), see Robin Lustig, see this one and that one, with their "occupied" this and that, and their consultations with Azzam Tamimi, the hysterical Hamas supporter in London, and all the rest of it, including John Simpson, great admirer of that anti-Israel (I'd call it antisemitic) conspiracy theory book by Simpson's friend Peter Hounam (who was himself once jailed by the Israelis), the grotesque "Cyanide Conspiracy" -- a book presented as non-fiction.
The BBC as a whole has a great deal that needs to be investigated for its pro-Muslim bias in its coverage, top to bottom, in what is broadcast to its home audience and everywhere else -- with the possible exception of the one part of the BBC that is now being complained so noisily about, complaints that no doubt will be treated with much greater solicitousness than have any of the complaints made along the lines of those I have offered. Trevor Asserson and others for years have steadily toted up examples of extraordinary bias; they got, they have gotten, nowhere. The BBC is a scandal, and at a time when the British public has decided to begin to inform itself about Islam, having been betrayed by its own media and political elites for so long, the BBC can't continue in this vein much longer, without someone coming along and harnessing public unease and fury and causing bodies to be dropped out of Bush House, as they should have been long ago. A defenestration devoutly to be wished.
Posted on 07/20/2008 6:56 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Txtng: the gr8 db8
U shldnt gt vxt abt txt. Marcus Berckmann reviews David Crystal's new book in Saturday's Times:
It's almost comic to imagine how annoyed some people will be by the title of this book. But texting (the idea of it, the practice, the mere word sometimes) does get people's goats. David Crystal quotes two such commentators with relish. “[Texters are] vandals doing to our language what Genghis Khan did to his neighbours 800 years ago,” said John Humphrys, possibly with foam-flecked lips. “Texting is bleak, bald, sad shorthand which masks dyslexia, poor spelling and mental laziness,” wrote John Sutherland (how v irrtbl he mst hv bn th@ am).
Good grief, an entire generation of young people not only can't read or write proper sentences, but are developing repetitive strain injury in their thumbs. And does “LOL” mean lots of love or laugh out loud? It's all too appalling for words.
Of course, we've been here before with rock'n'roll, psychedelia, space hoppers, the charleston ...for every youth craze, there were oldsters who decried it. Similarly, there have always been people who wished to protect the poor, vulnerable English language from assault by barbarians. If texting is unique, it's because it has managed to unite these two discrete groups of grouches under a single banner. Thus far in this gr8 db8, we seem to have heard only one side of it.
So here's Crystal, honorary professor of linguistics at the University of Wales, Bangor, and prolific writer of books on the subject, to answer the charges. He says that all the popular beliefs about texting are wrong, or at least debatable. Its playful way with language isn't new. Most of the hated abbreviations have been around for years. “They are part of the European ludic linguistic tradition, and doubtless analogues can be found in all languages that have been written down.”
As it is, most of the dafter emoticons and abbreviations aren't actually used by most people: they turn up only in the text-messaging dictionaries, which seem to have been designed specifically to exclude everyone not taking part. “Faced with a new kind of communication problem...people all over the world have set about solving it...not by inventing a new language but by adapting old language to suit the new medium.” Texting doesn't erode literacy: it actually challenges literacy skills. “I do not see how texting could be a significant factor when discussing children who have real problems with literacy. If you have difficulty with reading and writing, you are hardly going to be predisposed to use a technology which demands sophisticated abilities in reading and writing.” An obvious argument, but not one I remember seeing before.
Crystal's polemic is backed up by a formidable body of research. This is clearly the fashionable academic subject of the moment. (If only spacehoppers had received the same attention.) But he also quotes some delightful texting poetry, which, he points out, differs from poetry written on the page in that you can't see the last line when you read the first: you have to read it strictly in order, and this gives it an entirely different narrative thrust. There are also some terrific glossaries of texting abbreviations in other languages. In French, d100 is descend, gt is j'étais and, of course, edr is écroulé de rire - laughed out loud. Well, I smiled at least.
I'm inclined to agree with David Crystal - I usually do. Texting is not a threat to national literacy; that threat comes from falling educational standards, poor English in our newspapers and "management speak". In fact, some of the worst English is used in academia and the pseudo-academia of business training, and it involves lengthening words rather than shortening them.
I text a lot myself and happily use abbreviations, so I am not about to harrumph about others who do. However, I will harrumph about the headline on the cover of Saturday's Times, highlighting the book review within. Yes, you've guessed it: "The Joy of Text". When will people stop making arch reference to the execrable 1970s book by Alex Comfort? With its hideous bearded dwarf, tucking into his "starters" and "mains", it puts you off eating anything, even your words. (How do I know? Oh, all right then, we passed it around at school and sniggered.) Erstwhile New English Review writer John Derbyshire fell into this trap with his article The Joy of Vex. Good article, bad title, but at least vex rhymes with sex.
Sooner or later, somebody is going to come up with the title: "Text and the City". Sooner, rather than later. In fact somebody already has. Harrrummph.
Posted on 07/20/2008 6:38 AM by Mary Jackson
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Brown Visits Iraq, Tawafiq Rejoins Gov't
There are signs of enough stability to allow a quick withdrawal of American and British forces without our men being overwhelmingly attacked by rogue forces on the way out. And with Maliki essentially endorsing the Obama 16 month withdrawal plan, this is a window of opportunity we should take advantage of and wave goodbye to Iraq.
New Duranty: BAGHDAD — Iraqi lawmakers cleared an important hurdle on Saturday by approving the appointment of six Sunni cabinet ministers after a yearlong boycott by the Sunni political bloc.
Also on Saturday, Prime Minister Gordon Brown of Britain made an unannounced visit to Iraq. He held talks with senior Iraqi officials in Baghdad, including Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki and President Jalal Talabani, and then flew to the southern city of Basra to meet with British troops.
The Sunni ministers approved by Parliament were all members of Tawafiq, the largest Sunni bloc, which had been boycotting Mr. Maliki’s government since last August. The return of Tawafiq is a significant political victory for Mr. Maliki, who has been trying to cement his reputation as a national leader who transcends sectarian lines.
Sunni participation in the Iraqi government has been an important goal for the United States, and the return of the Sunni bloc will be seen as progress in an otherwise bumpy political reconciliation process...
Posted on 07/20/2008 7:19 AM by Rebecca Bynum
Sunday, 20 July 2008
A Musical Interlude: The Penguin In Love (Trio Lescano, Silvana Fioresi)
Posted on 07/20/2008 8:13 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Graham Stewart writes in The Times on Luddite leaders:
Has John McCain blown it? The presidential candidate's admission that he has not worked out how to use e-mail is being portrayed as evidence that the 71-year-old Republican is disconnected from the modern world.
Mind you, setting up an e-mail account was something that Tony Blair never managed in his ten years as front man for Cool Britannia. More intriguing still is Alastair Campbell's confession that he too was internet-illiterate in his period as a master of communication.
The telephone was more than 60 years old when the Second World War broke out. Yet the Prime Minister was only easily contactable if he stayed in the vicinity of Downing Street. Unfortunately, Neville Chamberlain preferred to spend his weekends at Chequers. The country house had only one telephone and it was there to help the kitchen staff to order supplies rather than to secure the survival of the British Empire.
Whenever Hitler made a surprise move, Chamberlain had to be whisked off to the butler's pantry.
This was no way to save the Western world and, as anyone who has visited the Cabinet War Rooms in Whitehall will have spotted, telephones were one of the few visible nods to modernity on Winston Churchill's desk.
But, in other respects, he could hardly claim to be au fait with the practicalities of life. Despite escaping from a prisoner-of-war camp, Churchill was engagingly clueless at daily chores. He travelled on the London Underground only once. Even this excursion went wrong. With childlike incompetence, he could not work out how to alight from the Circle Line and had to be rescued from the carriage having done a number of full circuits in it.
Given the gravity of the times, the issue was whether he could smash the Axis powers rather than, metaphorically, punch his way out of a paper bag. After all, Roy Jenkins, so regularly lauded as one of the greatest home secretaries of the 20th century, always claimed he did not know how to boil an egg.
Sometimes politicians ought to be too busy to surf the internet. Senator McCain should take his cue from Harold Macmillan, who managed simultaneously to admit that he did not watch television while showing off his knowledge of what was on it - “Not for me the joys of Half Hours with Hancock. No Dixon. No Maigret. No Chislebury. No Lone Ranger. No Lennie the Lion. It isn't actually that we can't afford a set at No10, but the trouble is my employers never actually give me an evening off.”
I'm not impressed. McCain is only 71. The Queen (82) has email and a mobile phone, and the Pope (81) has an iPod.
Posted on 07/20/2008 8:57 AM by Mary Jackson
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Queen to abdicate
From The Times:
Hot news from Germany: the Queen is about to abdicate to make way for Prince William. “A world sensation,” says the cover of Frau mit Herz (Woman with Heart), the weekly that broke the story.
“The Queen will flabbergast her subjects with this wide-reaching decision.” The Prince of Wales, we are told, took the news “as pale as chalk. He left the Palace without saying a word.”
The story is only the latest concoction — albeit the most daring in its use of fictional narrative — in a country that has become obsessed with British royalty.
More than a dozen weekly magazines with titles such as Neue Welt, Frau Aktuell and Neue Post have been spinning a fantasy world about Buckingham Palace for Germans enthralled by the magic of kingship. Every week an estimated nine million here absorb the nuggets from unnamed courtiers, and though few admit to buying the magazines, the stories inform the conversation at hairdressers and sausage counters across the country.
“We all grow up with fairytales where princes and princesses play a major role,” says Rolf Seelmann-Eggebert, for many years the royal expert for the ARD state television channel. “And then we get older and think, oh, they really exist. So the curiosity remains and the need to be informed grows.”
The Germans have lived under a republican system since the Kaiser abdicated in 1918. The aristocrats have not disappeared — the Association for Nobility reckons that up to 80,000 people in Germany have titles of some sort — but there is little glamour attached to them. A reality television series featuring the search of four counts to find commoner wives merely reinforced the idea that German aristos were rather dull.
The editor of Frau mit Herz, Ingeborg Wagle-Kaul, was not available yesterday to take calls or reply to e-mails. It is, therefore, unclear as to how she intends to follow up the abdication story next week. The sourcing of the story — “British aristocracy experts” — also remains a little vague for a world sensation. The sources seem to know though that the Queen is working on her abdication speech. “The news has not yet been officially confirmed,” the magazine says, “but when it is, it will hit Britain with the force of a bomb.”
I get uneasy when Germans say that kind of thing.
Posted on 07/20/2008 9:25 AM by Mary Jackson
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Move over, Esperanto - Poles in Britain are speaking Ponglish. From The Telegraph:
Just as French and English combined to form Franglais, the Polish have their own linguistic cocktail: Ponglish.
The slang takes in everything from taxes – taksy – to driving, whose Ponglish equivalent, drajwnic, seems unlikely until it is pronounced: driveneech.
Those Ponglish drivers, of course, are sure to take care around "kornerze" on the "strity" while in the "kara".
After a hard day's work, what better than a chat with some "frendy"?
A spot of old school romance, on the other hand, seems less likely, with precious little magic in the Ponglish phrase "miec sex".
"We mix the two languages together all the time," said Magda Pustola, from the Polish Cultural Institute in London. "It's absolutely common to blend words and phrases. We find that more and more English is creeping into our Polish even in meetings at the institute."
Some Polish workers in the UK report that the slang has become a secret language that infuriates older Poles back home who can't understand what they are saying.
But in Warsaw, young Poles are quickly adopting the new vocabulary.
There people are already "szoping" (shopping) for clothes, such as a 'tiszert', or going for a 'drinkowac' at the pub, presumably with a 'lajtowy' or light, easy going person.
In a Times article not available online, Ben MacIntyre argues that Ponglish is a pidgin:
Unsurprisingly, given the industry of the newcomers, most Ponglish words refer to working, driving, paying taxes, lunch breaks and drinking. An editorial in The Daily Telegraph sniffed that words in Ponglish "exude an aroma of low commerce and lower consumerism". True, Ponglish is not the stuff of high culture, but most pidgins are constructed this way: as simple language structures ensuring that different peoples understand one another sufficiently to turn a mutual profit.
Is it really a pidgin, or is it just a fad? MacIntyre goes on to discuss Chinese pidgin English:
When you take a "look-see", or declare that you "no-can-do" or even enter a "no-go area", you are expressing the remnants of a mercantile language formed by the origins of Anglo-Chinese trade.
I hadn't thought about "no-go area" like that, despite writing an article on them. MacIntyre reminds me of a snippet of information I had heard on Stephen Fry's QI programme:
Among the Koorie people in the Australian Outback, a solar eclipse is Kerosene lamp him b'long Jesus-Christ gone bugger-up altogether.
Me no think so. One person probably said it once. Yu pull leg bilong mipela.
Posted on 07/20/2008 9:36 AM by Mary Jackson
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Sally Baker cracks the whip on Latin plurals:
Who would have thought that the Max Mosley affair would find its way into this column, or that it would give rise to a style question beyond that of what the well-undressed sado-masochist is wearing this season? For those of you who missed Thursday's Diary item, which posed but didn't answer it, the question is: what is the correct plural of dominatrix?
Apparently in court this week, Mr Mosley's QC favoured dominatrixes, while The News of the World's QC's classical education led him via indices and appendices to dominatrices. In advance of Mr Justice Eady's verdict I consulted a much higher authority, the chief revise editor of this newspaper, who handed down his judgment that it is the latter. Case closed, and not a double entendre or cod German phrase in sight; I deserve a medal.
The question on everyone's tongue - and no cracks about fellatrices - is why would you need more than one? A dominatrix isn't a team player. If she needs help, maybe it's time for the old dog to learn some new trices.
Posted on 07/20/2008 10:29 AM by Mary Jackson
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Observing Verbal Decorum
I will repeat this one more time for Mary.
Some may remember George Carlin's "Seven Little Words You Can Never Say on Television" routine, and the banning of that routine by the FCC, and the resulting case which went all the way to the Supreme Court, the Court affirming a lower court's upholding the constitutionality of the FCC's banning words that it considered "patently offensive."
It would be good, since such "patently offensive words" seldom convince, and always lower the tone, if attempts were made to suppress the urge to use them at this website.
One can, after all, smuggle all kinds of things in through a poker-faced pun, so as not to outwardly disturb public morals.
One example. from a comment posted, about a list some magazine had compiled of the "20 Most Important Intellectuals":
"No Tariq Ramadan? No Cornel West? No Jeffery Sachs? This list is not nearly as completely 100% awful as it should be; the presence of Umberto Eco at #2 throws one off.
But nothing takes the cake like having Thomas Friedman, the man who uses his fingers to "make" "quotation" "mark" "signs" "around" "words" when he talks, appear on a list of the “20 Most Important” or indeed on any list at all, of "intellectuals."
The world is flat, says never-doubting-for-a-minute Thomas Friedman. Platitudes, plongitudes.
Le monde est bien plat. Quant a l'autre, sornettes. Put that in your pipe (ceci n'est pas une pipe, as the dissatisfied customer complained loudly to the management of the maison close on rue Chabanais), you compilers of such idiotic lists -- and smoke it.
One of those Seven Little Words is present, wearing an Inspector Clouseau disguise as it glides virtually unnoticed through the art gallery, in the last sentence. Those who read that posting would not have been offended. A matter of phrasing. A matter of tact.
The failure to observe the rules of verbal decorum could drive away visitors. In the past such a problem would not have arisen. The line between the seemly and the unseemly, le cru et le cuit, would have been clearly demarcated. But unseemly language can now be encountered at every stratum of society. It can be heard in the speech of the grasping stock market racketeer in his home office, next to his home gym, in New Canaan, Connecticut. It can be heard in the lecture of the tie-less, suit-less, sock-less professor on Morningside Heights who, wishing to demonstrate to his students just how with-it he can be, delivers himself of phrases that fail to impress, his crude quotes left to haunt him when they appear, unexpunged and unexpungeable, in the next edition of the Student Guide to Professors.
Unseemliness can even be detected on the lips of the non-native speaker of English. Just imagine a well-bred and fetching French agronomist, winsome and wayward, deeply involved in an irrumation project in Mentula, Mississippi, who has learned from the locals to reproduce an expression the meaning of which she, in her innocence, does not fully grasp. Under the circumstances, one would naturally forgive her lapses of langue and parole.
In order to keep the site presentable and accounted for, one has to be a little less forgiving here.
As the raspy-voiced referee with the cigar stub jammed in the side of his mouth always says just before the opening bell sounds for the first round of the bout in Madison Square Garden: Got that, boys? Just make sure you keep things clean. No hitting below the belt. Now get out there and fight.
Posted on 07/20/2008 1:14 PM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Group to be stoned to death
From The Australian
AT least eight women and one man have been sentenced to be stoned to death in Iran and may be executed at any time, the lawyers defending several of those sentenced said today.
The eight women, ranging in age from 27 to 43, had convictions including prostitution, incest and adultery. The man, a 50-year-old music teacher, was convicted of illegal sex with a student. The last officially reported stoning in the Islamic Republic was carried out on a man a year ago which drew criticism from rights groups, the European Union and a top U.N. official.
Iran's judiciary chief Ayatollah Mohmoud Hashemi-Shahroudi ordered a moratorium on stoning in 2002.
"Our specific and clear demand is to have the stoning sentence stopped by Ayatollah Shahroudi since the defendants are liable to be stoned at any moment," defence lawyer Mariam Kian-Arsi said.
Judiciary officials were not immediately available for comment. But the Iranian authorities routinely dismiss charges of rights abuses, saying they are acting on Islamic sharia law.
Amnesty International earlier this year called on Iran to immediately abolish "this grotesque punishment" and said many of those awaiting execution by stoning were sentenced after grossly unfair trials.
Iran responds to Western criticism of its rights record by pointing to what it says are abuses in the West, such as detainees held by the United States in Guantanamo Bay.
Posted on 07/20/2008 2:32 PM by Esmerelda Weatherwax
Sunday, 20 July 2008
How Britain Helps Hamas And The Muslim Brotherhood
Aidrian Morgan in Western Resistance presents a comprehensive account of Britain's role in helping - or not doing enough to hinder - Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood. This is only Part I.
Claims of alleged links between the Muslim Association of Britain and the Muslim Brotherhood have been made inside parliament and in the mainstream media.
On August 11, 2004, Anthony Browne wrote a coruscating attack upon the MAB in the Times. Browne asserted that despite MAB's denials, it still shared much in common with the Muslim Brotherhood. On its website, it carried an article that stated Jews were "vampires", and Azzam Tamimi had written: "If they want to be as human as anybody else, Jews must wake up before it is too late." Browne also noted that the MAB had invited Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi to London. Qaradawi is regarded as the "spiritual leader" of the Muslim Brotherhood. He was welcomed by the leftist Mayor of London in July 2004.
The 2008 [Islamexpo] event would cause embarrassment to politicians and other figures in the establishment. For one British blogsite there were threats of legal action. One leader of a government think-tank which had contributed to Islam Expo resigned at the end of the five-day event. These issues, as well as other examples of the British establishment's flirtation with the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas, will be discussed in Part Two.
David T of Harry's Place played a major role in uncovering some links between the Muslim Association of Britain and the Muslim Brotherhood, and deserves genuine support in fighting the libel action against him, rather than the sneering contempt and ill-concealed gloating he has received in certain quarters.
Posted on 07/20/2008 3:12 PM by Mary Jackson
Sunday, 20 July 2008
An Act To Protect First Responders Fighting Terrorism
by Jerry Gordon
The mainstream media has copped out on an important story that, post 9/11, is a threat to the counterterrorism effort. The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and other Muslim Brotherhood (MB) front groups, cited by the U.S. Justice Department as unindicted co-conspirators in the Holy Land Foundation case to be retried in the Dallas Federal District Court in September, have thwarted federal, state and local counterterrorism training by objecting to it as ‘racist’ or as ‘religious hate’ and in many cases forcing discontinuation of such training. The result has been workplace harrassment of the important first responders charged with protecting us. Federal agencies like the FBI and DHS and local police departments in Los Angeles, New York, and Fairfax County Virginia have been intimidated by false charges by these MB groups. In some instances they have been forced under threat of civil law suits to abandon counterterrorism training. The result is that our front line in the war against radical Islamic groups looks like a deer frozen in the headlights of an oncoming vehicle. Worse yet, we are allowing the MB front groups to get away with this under the guise of ‘hate speech, religious profiling, civil rights’ and obsessive political correctness by federal, state and local political leaders and the department heads of these front line first responder agencies. more...
Posted on 07/20/2008 5:29 PM by NER
Sunday, 20 July 2008
Making a virtue out of necessity
I am just catching up with some TV programmes recorded earlier in the week, including Channel 4's The Koran. I haven't seen all of this, but it seems a bit of a whitewash, though good in parts.
When asked about Islam's barbaric punishments - flogging, amputation, stoning - Islam apologists repeatedly claim that the evidence requirements are so strict that, in practice, such punishments are rarely carried out. In that case, I ask with Infidel curiosity, what is the point of them?
Sheikh Tayser Rajat Al Tamimi, "Supreme Judge of the Islamic Courts in Palestine", trots out the same line about strict evidence requirements. But he rather shoots himself in the foot:
"Since the inception of Islam until today, the number of times that adulterers have received the full punishment can be counted on the fingers of one hand. The same goes for amputation."
On the other hand...
Posted on 07/20/2008 5:43 PM by Mary Jackson